Children love to play with a number of things from store bought toys to boxes. If you ask me, they prefer the boxes over the store bought toys because their imagination runs wild. They also have a love for building structures whether it's with wooden, cardboard, or even large Lego blocks. Play is the job of a child. That’s what childhood is all about, but play can always be turned into meaningful experiences. Have you ever heard the saying, “children learn through play”? I’m sure you have. Today's blog post is a great read for National Lego Day.
In my PreK class, my students absolutely love the block area for many reasons. But like anything that you do a lot, you would eventually get bored. In order to keep the excitement in the block area, I added letters and numbers to the large Lego blocks. As children play, it affords them an opportunity to reinforce their letter recognition and put the alphabet in order. Here are some ways to use these Lego blocks with letters:
Alphabet Sequence: Encourage children to put the letters in order from A to Z. Pay attention to the strategies they may use to sequence the letters. Are they repeating the alphabet from the beginning for each letter until they get to the next one? Or, do they already know what comes after the previous letter. Are they using charts in their environment to assist with completing the task?
Letter Sound Hunt: Say each letter sound in no particular order and encourage children to find the letter that matches the sound. To add a challenge to this, set a timer, ask your child to race against the timer to see how many blocks can be found in a set number of seconds or minutes. If you choose to do this with two or more players, at the end they can count the total number of blocks each person has and determine who has more and less.
Uppercase and Lowercase Letter Match: Tape the uppercase and lowercase on separate Lego blocks. Ask children to find the lowercase that goes with the uppercase letter.
Lego Sight Word Builder: Use a sharpie marker to write letters on the Legos. Encourage children to build the words that you have already taught them. Provide index cards with the words so children can use it as a reference as they build the words.
The Lego blocks are not limited to literacy, you can also incorporate math skills:
Numeral and Quantity Match: Label the Lego blocks with separate number and dot cards. Mix all the blocks up before children begin to play. As they pick up a block, they must identify the number or the quantity, then they must find the other block to match. For example, if the child grabs a Lego block with 6 dots, he/she must count to tell how many, then find the numeral block.
Sequence Numbers: The blocks are numbered 1 through 10. Children can have fun putting the numbers in order. Each block has the numeral and the quantity on the same card. The number of dots help to reinforce the numeral and quantity relationship. If a child does not know the name of the number, encourage them to count the dots to determine the number's name.
Alphabet Height: Measurement is part of PreK standards. Children can talk about how many Legos tall they are or which letter tall they are after putting the letters in order. Also, include other materials that children can use for measuring.
Hi, I am Odessa. I'm a mom of two wonderful children and a teacher. I have a Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Education and a Master of Science in Childhood Education with over 10 years of PreK and Kindergarten experience. I am a lover of all things literacy for children and their curiosity of the world. Get comfy and click around my site. I hope you find something you'll like, and something your kids will love! P.S. Akwaaba means 'welcome' :)
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